running-cardioIt is a common myth that weight loss can be achieved through a large, exhausting amount of cardio. Most people believe or are made to believe that the only way to get in shape is to run until their legs give way. Of course, cardio exercises are an effective weight loss tool, just not on their own; they need to be accompanied by other exercises that target your entire body.

An ideal regimen for losing weight and gaining lean muscles would include circuit training, strength training, HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training), and proper diet and nutrition.

Myth #1: Cardio burns the most calories

Fact: Circuit training burns the same amount of calories, and it keeps them off longer.

The average 68 kg woman, jogging at the average speed of 8 km/h, will burn about 109 calories for per mile (1.6 km). Every mile would be approximately 12 minutes of monotonous jogging, targeting, and exhausting the same muscle groups over and over. The same woman, doing a varied circuit training workout will burn the same 109 calories per 12 minutes, while hitting more muscle groups at once, increasing the effectiveness of her workout.

Myth #2: Your body only burns calories while you’re working out.

Fact: With circuit and strength training, your body continues to burn calories even long after you’re done!

HIIT, which comprises of short bursts of high-intensity exercises accompanied by recovery low-intensity exercises, increases your heart rate and improves your endurance. For about 20 hours after a HIIT workout, your body is forced to work harder to recover by re-oxygenating your muscles from the lactic acid build-up caused by exercising.

Myth #3: Cardio only burns fat

Fact: It burns both fat and muscle

When your intramuscular fat is depleted, your body starts looking for energy from other sources and so it begins eating away your muscle mass. That’s why it is vital that you incorporate strength training into your regimen; it will keep your muscles in a state of recovery, replenishing their protein stress, and most importantly – rebuilding them. Circuit training (combination of strength training and HIIT) strengthens your bones and muscles, causing your body to work to create healthier bone and muscle mass, while eating away at your fat reserves.

Myth #4: You can only get a “runner’s high” from cardio.

Fact: Circuit training also releases endorphins and serotonin

Circuit and strength training have been shown to increase your body’s growth hormone levels. This lets you sleep better, recover better, and even fight disease better. A varied workout will release more endorphins and serotonin or ‘happy chemicals’ as they are commonly called because they improve your mood and help your recover better, and even fight diseases better!

Myth #5: Exercise is too time-consuming.

Fact: Circuit training is the most efficient form of exercise.

high-intensityCircuit training is perfect for those of you who are looking to get fit and keep fit. It is highly efficient such that you get your value for money and time. It takes a mere 20-30 minutes a day and you can even exercise anywhere you like – yes, even in the comfort of your home!

Not to forget, pay attention to what you eat and drink. Whether you train at home or at the gym, do not take your diet lightly. Speak to a nutritionist in your centre or hire a personal dietician. In Pune, you can get one of the best diet and nutrition counselling from Anjali Mukerjee Health Total in Aundh, Shivajinagar, Kalyani Nagar, and Kothrud.

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